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Refugee Revival

Dilli Lumjel gave his life to Jesus on May 4, 2011, at 1:33 a.m. Earlier that day, he had performed a Hindu funeral service for his father-in-law in a refugee camp in eastern Nepal, where he lived with more than 12,000 other refugees.

As was the custom, Lumjel spent the night at his wife’s uncle’s house. Both of Lumjel’s parents-in-law had recently converted to Christianity. That night he had a vision: His mother-in-law approached him and shared the gospel, stating, “If you enter this house, you have to believe in Jesus.” Then he saw a flash of lightning from heaven and heard a voice saying, “What you are hearing is true; you have to believe.” In the dream, he knelt down crying and committed his life to Jesus.

When he woke up, his face was wet with tears. Lumjel called a local pastor and told him he had had a dream and was now a Christian. The news shocked his family of devout Hindus. He said, “Every­body—my relatives, my wife, sisters—they all woke up asking, ‘What happened to Dilli? Is he mental? He says he’s a Christian!’”

The next day, the pastor explained the gospel to Lumjel and his wife. The two committed their lives to Jesus. A day later, Lumjel began attending a monthlong Bible school in the refugee camp. Then church leaders sent Lumjel out to preach the gospel to other refugees. Several months later, he became a church deacon, then an elder.

One year later, Lumjel arrived in Columbus, Ohio, as part of a massive resettlement of about 96,000 ethnic Nepalis expelled from their home of Bhutan to the United States. There he joined Yusuf Kadariya in pastoring a group of about 35 Bhutanese Nepali families. As more Bhutanese Nepali refugees settled in Columbus and the group brought more people to Christ, the church continued to grow.

Today, Lumjel is a full-time pastor at Emmanuel Fellowship Church in Columbus. On a wintry Sunday morning in December, about 200 people streamed into the sanctuary, greeting one another with a slight bow and “Jai Masih,” meaning “Victory to Christ.”

Possible Preaching Angle:

God is bringing the nations to our neighborhoods here in America and is bringing many to faith in Christ. We can carry out the Great Commission in part by welcoming them with Christian love and sharing the gospel to those with hungry hearts.

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